Widely considered to be one of Toronto‘s most recognized street artists, Jabari Elliott aka Elicser has won numerous ‘Best of Toronto’ accolades from NOW Magazine. It’s near impossible to take a stroll through a graffiti alley without crossing paths with his contemplative faces and grand murals. If you’ve walked along Queen Street West you couldn’t miss the infamous Hug Me tree, a dead stump of a tree painted by Elicser that has become an icon of the trendy neighbourhood. A graduate of Sheridan College, Elicser has adorned many walls over the past 15 years and is available for commissioned works. His contact info can be found on his website.
Around 3000 people came together at Nathan Phillips Square for the Toronto People’s Climate March. The march organized by Avaaz.org, 350.org Toronto and Greenpeace Canada was held in solidarity with other People’s Climate Marches from around the world including one in New York that drew an estimated 300,000 people. With a unifying symbol of a green heart this worldwide day of action seeks to tell our leaders to rely less on fossil fuels and achieve a 100% clean energy plan by the year 2050. You can visit Avaaz.org to sign their petition which has already surpassed 2 million signatures.
According to their facebook page, Toronto punk quartet The OBGMs or Ooohh Baby Gimme Mores are guaranteed to give you a ‘booty shaking, fist pumping’ good time. They didn’t disappoint their mosh pit loving fans at their debut cd release party at the Rivoli on Queen Street West. Living up to their punk spirit they announced to the audience to ‘listen to the album, then pirate the fuck out of it.’
Photographed for the Live Music review in NOW Magazine.
Pro Palestinian protesters gathered across the street from the Israeli consulate for the All Out For Gaza rally. While members of the Jewish Defense League and Pro Israeli supporters blared music and danced, the Palestine supporters from all backgrounds spoke of bringing an end to the violence in Gaza.
Coming off a sold out run during Fringe Festival 2014, writer/director Rosa LaBordé remounts her play True starring Scott McCord. The site specific play takes place in a Queen Street West café, in this case Citizenry Café, and is a modern take on Shakespeare’s King Lear. LaBordé and McCord are the founding members of Criminal Theatre.
Photographed on September 5, 2014 for NOW Magazine.
I had no idea what to expect from the innovative tech and music event known as Absolut Makerfest. The Absolut Vodka sponsored festival was free to all those that RSVP’d, still leaving a line that stretched down the block at 99 Sudbury. The venue was chosen well for it’s labyrinth of rooms featuring inventive robotics, djs and a concert featuring Sir Lancelot and headliner Theophilus London. You could have a robot mix your complimentary drink then wander through the maze to the funky sounds drifting in from the next room.
Photographed for the Live Music review in NOW Magazine.
Warm weather hits Toronto and suddenly it’s that part of the year to partake in Canada’s favourite pastime. Well maybe the second favourite pastime next to hockey. I’m talking about sitting on a beautiful patio on a sunny day, doing some people watching and swigging back on local craft beer or imported brews. My mission for NOW Toronto‘s annual Beer Guide, and I chose to accept it, was to hit up some local bars and photograph the spaces, beers and staff that make our summer days and nights just that much better.
No photographers, but many beers, were harmed during the taking of these photographs.
LGBTQ communities from around the globe converged on Toronto, host city of World Pride 2014. Toronto is the first North American city to host the international event and this year’s theme was Rise Up. The Sunday parade, which is normally quite lengthy, lasted an astonishing 6 hours. Hot and sweaty Pride revelers were treated to a rain shower later in the evening that produced a double rainbow over The Village. It was a magical and fitting closing ceremony to cap off a week’s worth of festivities.
Lady lovers rejoice! The World Pride Dyke March in Toronto was bigger and more Sapphic than ever. Dykes on Bikes and crochet banners by Craft Action TO, led the way up Yonge Street on an alternative route from previous years. The barrier free march had the crowds cheering and joining in on the hot, sweaty, gay old time.
Since 2009, Toronto‘s Trans Pride Rally & March has been a community based safe space for Trans identified people and their allies to congregate, march, celebrate and protest. With the international community coming together this year for World Pride, Toronto became the first host city in North America and the first to have a Trans Pride gathering. The march route went all the way down Yonge Street from Bloor to Yonge-Dundas Square where a concert featuring Trans artists helped kick off the Pride weekend.
The Stop Community Food Centre’s annual Night Market fundraiser proceeded despite a torrential downpour in Toronto. 45 vendors served up delicious food and drink in the Honest Ed’s back alley to raise money for the local not-for-profit community food group. Foodies lined up bearing umbrellas, dollar store raincoats and stomachs hungry for some of Toronto’s top nibbles and drinks. Those willing to stick out the flying tents and weather drama were eventually treated to some sunshine and good eats.
Hundreds of cyclists put the ‘fun between their legs’ for the 10th annual World Naked Bike Ride. Unsuspecting pedestrians and motorists were a little more than surprised to see the naked rolling spectacle on two wheels take over downtown streets. For the most part, the bare all bike rally was met with cheers and smiles while purveying a message of less dependence on oil and gas.